House for an Art Lover, Glasgow


Charles Rennie Mackintosh

Charles Rennie Mackintosh is Scotland’s most celebrated architect and designer of the 20th century. 2018 is the 150th anniversary of his birth so come and celebrate his work and legacy across Glasgow, where he left a beautiful and lasting mark on the city. Come and admire his work for yourself.

About Mackintosh

Charles Rennie Mackintosh portrait

It was clear from an early age that Charles Rennie Mackintosh was bursting with talent. Born in Glasgow, he had a flair for drawing and design, and as a young man he embarked on his illustrious career with an architectural apprenticeship and evening classes at the Glasgow School of Art. He won several awards for his work, including the prestigious Alexander Thomson Travelling Studentship, which took him on an architectural tour of Italy.

The Glasgow Style

The Glasgow School of Art became the centre of an art movement in Scotland, and quickly earned its stellar reputation for architecture, art and design. The ‘Glasgow Style’ was created by Mackintosh and his contemporaries - Herbert MacNair and two sisters, Margaret and Frances MacDonald. They met as students during the 1890s and became known as ‘the Four’ exhibiting their work across the world.

From exquisite pieces of furniture in museums to a graceful building in a city park, these simple and stylish Art Nouveau designs became iconic and can still be seen all around Glasgow.

Art is the Flower. Life is the Green Leaf. Let every artist strive to make his flower a beautiful living thing, something that will convince the world that there may be, there are, things more precious, more beautiful - more lasting than life itself.

Charles Rennie Mackintosh, 1902.

8 places to visit

Mackintosh at the Willow

Mackintosh at the Willow situated at 217 Sauchiehall Street, takes you back to when the 1903 tearooms were first opened. A sympathetic project has restored this collaboration between Miss Cranston and the creative genius of Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Enjoy afternoon tea and learn of the legacy of Charles Rennie Mackintosh in the visitor centre.

The Lighthouse

The Lighthouse staircase Mackintosh Tower architecture

The Lighthouse, on Mitchell Lane, is one of Mackintosh's earliest buildings and was originally designed as the Glasgow Herald newspaper offices. Now home to Scotland's Centre for Design & Architecture, it includes the fascinating Mackintosh Interpretation Centre and the Mackintosh Tower, which offers panoramic views. You can also see a new exhibition of Mackintosh designs that unfortunately were never built.

Scotland Street Museum

Visit the beautiful building of Scotland Street Museum, which is free entry, to see impressive leaded glass towers and the magnificent tiled entrance hall, as well as a room dedicated to Mackintosh's work.

Willow Tea Rooms

Willow Tearoom afternoon tea

You can indulge in a decadent afternoon tea amidst stylish art nouveau interiors, seated on one of Mackintosh's famous high-backed chairs at two locations in Glasgow. Visit the beautiful Mackintosh-inspired Willow Tea Rooms on Buchanan Street or the Willow Tearooms in the Watt Brothers department store on Sauchiehall Street.

Mackintosh Queen's Cross Church

Queen's Cross Church is a Mackintosh design which opened in 1899. See the magnificent stained glass windows which capture the light and the exceptional wood and stone carvings of this building which is now the international headquarters of the Charles Rennie Mackintosh Society.

The Hill House

Hill House stained glass

Outside of Glasgow, Helensburgh is home to another stunning Mackintosh-designed property - The Hill House. Sitting high above the Clyde, it is home to original furniture and interior design, and also has formal gardens designed in the Mackintosh style. The Hill House is currently closed while work to protect its stunning exterior is completed but limited unique tours of the house are available.

Mackintosh House

At the University of Glasgow's Hunterian Art Gallery is the Mackintosh House, one of the most significant Mackintosh attractions. Astonishingly, the home that Mackintosh shared with his wife at 6 Florentine Terrace, has been meticulously reassembled at this site ensuring the sequence of rooms exactly relfect the original. The house even shares the same views, as the original was only 100 metres away.

House for an Art Lover

House for an Art Lover fireplace 

Not far from the city centre is the Mackintosh designed House for an Art Lover, in Bellahouston Park. The building was designed for a competition in 1901 but not built until 1989. As well as admiring the magnificent external design, explore the breathtaking rooms, which feature high-back chairs, oval shapes and floral inserts.

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